GeoSmile is one of the many apps that rewards you to walk. As I write this, they have more than 50,000+ downloads on the Google Play Store with a mediocre 3.5/5 rating. With more than 14+ million downloads in Japan, it appears that they are looking to capitalize on other markets.
If you’re looking for an app that rewards you to move, you may be wondering if this is worthy of space on your phone.
In today’s review, let’s take a look at how it works, what you can make, and of course if it’s worth your time.
And, as always, all of my reviews are 100% honest.
What is GeoSmile?
According to the company’s official site, GeoSmile transforms your daily movements, whether you’re walking, cycling, driving, or taking a train, into something more significant. Even on days you’re at home, you have the opportunity to earn points by participating in surveys or trying your luck with “Gacha.” You can then trade these points for a variety of rewards. However, keep in mind that the type of rewards can change, and they might be different depending on where you live.
GeoSmile is a creation of GeoTechnologies, Inc., a company with over a quarter-century of experience in crafting digital maps in Japan. Every day, they collect data about road changes from various sources like the government, newspapers, and the web. They then reward users for sharing their location data because it helps in refining maps and launching new location-centered services. Any data we get from you is made anonymous, ensuring your privacy.
Earning Rewards with GeoSmile
To earn “miles,” it can be done so by walking, driving and even taking the train, for instance. Simply put, as long as you’re moving, you will get rewarded.
When you download the app and agree to the terms, your dashboard, it’s going to look something like this:
As you can see, you can earn “miles,” the in-app currency in a variety of ways.
First, let’s talk about the main draw on the app – earning coins whenever you walk.
When you use the app, they highly recommend that you use Google Fit to track your steps or else you will find that it won’t work when you’re moving around.
For every 1,000 steps, you will earn miles/gems, but it appears it isn’t as much as you think. For instance, one person tested out the app and traveled close to 10 miles, only to earn 10 gems. Seeing most rewards are much more than this, as I will get into this later, you will only earn about one gem per mile, which isn’t much at all.
In the surveys section, you can earn even more miles just by answering survey questions.
For example, in that survey, I could earn 300 miles for about three minutes of my time.
These surveys tend to be few and far between, but if you do see one, it’s a few hundred gems.
Working just like surveys, these will be offers in which you can sign up for something and earn the gems specified.
When I was using the app, there were no offers available, but I have seen these types of offers many times.
If you want to take advantage of offers, I always recommend a much better and higher paying company such as Swagbucks.
And, on the main dashboard, as you could see in the screenshot in the beginning, you can earn about 50~ miles by watching 30 second ads. This may sound like something of interest, but I have found that watching videos is never worth your time.
The entire app is based on earning miles, which look like a green gem.
And, for every task you complete, you can earn a certain amount as specified. For example, you could earn 50 miles for watching an ad or about a gem per mile traveled, no matter how you do so.
To cash out, they have a few gift card options, such as Amazon, Grubhub and Old Navy, to name a few. However, seeing most people will want an Amazon gift card, they start at $2.
To make things easy, for every 10,000 miles/gems you earn, you can exchange it for $1 in gift cards.
How Much Can I Earn?
If we do the math, right away, you’re going to see that these miles aren’t worth all that much.
Let’s take the walking option, for instance.
If you were to earn only a few “miles” per mile traveled, you would have to drive more than 1,000+ miles just to earn $1.
If you were to watch the video ads and earn 50 miles each, you would have to watch at least 20 ads to earn $1 in value. Sounds great, but 20 ads at 30 to 60 seconds is about $1 per 30 minutes. Are you worth $2 per hour? Probably not.
In the end, you’re not going to earn much, and if you read the reviews on the official app store, you will see people share the same concerns.
How to Sign Up
If you like what you see, then signing up isn’t as bad as you think.
Before you create an account, however, they do want to track your location so that the app works properly. According to the location info, the app says that it “collects data on your current location to enable you to track the distance traveled to earn miles and to record and check your life log.” The data is collected even when the application is closed or not in use. All data is anonymized so that you cannot be identified and all data is used for mapping purposes and may provide it to third parties.
When you allow the company to track your location, you can immediately start earning.
When you’re ready to cash out for rewards, however, you will need to connect your Facebook or Google account.
- Cute Interface: Several people found the interface attractive and user-friendly.
- Innovative Concept: The idea of moving to earn money is appreciated as a novel concept.
- Good for Travelers: Those who travel frequently can accumulate points relatively faster.
- Regular Communication from Developer: GeoTechnologies, Inc. regularly responds to user complaints and concerns, which is always nice to see.
- Data and Battery Drain: The app consumes a significant amount of mobile data and battery life.
- Inappropriate Ads: Some users encountered inappropriate advertisements without an option to report them.
- Concerns About Data Privacy: Some users suspect the app’s main purpose is to track and sell user data.
- Slow Points Accumulation: Many users mentioned the slow accrual rate of points, making rewards hard to achieve.
- Issues with Features: Users reported problems with certain in-app features like the Boost ×3 button, the spinning feature, and surveys.
- Technical Glitches: Several complaints about the app not counting steps correctly, freezing, not displaying points, and randomly logging users out.
- Demanding: The app requires frequent attention and checks to accrue points.
In the end, GeoSmile lives up to the poor review.
It doesn’t pay much, there’s not much to it and it’s very draining on your battery. For this reason, I would recommend much better walking apps such as Sweatcoin, for example.
Walking apps will never pay you a lot, even the best ones, but I would rank this one toward the bottom, at least from my experience. If you want to share your experience, you’re more than welcome to sound off in the comments below.
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